Alabama-based Walton Creel has a rather interesting creative mission: "Deweaponizing the gun" via art. Perhaps you remember Mel Gibson from Lethal Weapon or Judd Nelson in New Jack City using Beretta slugs to blow a smiley face into paper targets; Creel goes several steps further, as you can see here.
"My main goal was to take the destructive power away from the gun," he writes in his treatise. "To manipulate the gun into a tool of creation and use it in a way that removed it from its original purpose...."
Hit the jump to see more shots of Creel's shots, and read his full treatise.
DEWEAPONIZING THE GUN - Walton Creel
The terms gun and weapon are practically interchangeable. From hunting to war, self defense to target practice, the gun has been a symbol of power and destruction. Art and entertainment have both taken the same approach to he gun. Traveling Wild West shows had gunslingers that shot crude silhouettes and names, but this was done to illustrate the shooters prowess. Some artists have used high speed film to capture a bullet slicing through its target, while other artists have melted guns into sculptures.
When I decided I wanted to make art using a gun, I was not sure what direction I would have to take. I knew I did not want to use it simply as an accent to work I was doing, but as the focus. My main goal was to take the destructive power away from the gun. To manipulate the gun into a tool of creation and use it in a way that removed it from its original purpose, to deweaponize it.
During my first experiment I came across the concept of creating an image hole by hole on a surface. I also figured out that canvas would be too stressed by the process of a rifle firing many bullets into it. I moved on to aluminum and, with further experimentation, I figured out exactly how far apart my shots needed to be and that moving beyond .22 caliber was simply too destructive. When the aluminum was painted beforehand, the blast of the gun knocked off a tiny amount of paint around each hole, which helped fuse the image together.